Under Lillian’s black mask, red lips, and her blemish-free white chin created a fascinating view. Lillian looked like a strong, sexy female warrior. Darkness, who saw this, clapped his hands and was deeply moved.
‘It’s going to happen—It’s possible no matter what! If she has some skills she is going to be a big star.’
Just then, the roar of the audience erupted outside. It was a sign that the game before Lillian’s had finished. The passage leading to the arena was loud. The staff rushed in.
“Get rid of it! Hurry! We have to start the next game in 20 minutes!”
“Someone— get me a mop and a bucket! There’s too much blood!”
Lillian’s face hardened at the unusual conversation outside. After opening the door and peeking out, a group of employees stormed past her view. They were loading a man on a stretcher.
Lillian’s eyes grew wide as she took in the sight of the man on the stretcher. His scarlet-and-navy outfit was familiar. He was a former mercenary who went out to play just before Lillian. But unlike his entrance to the arena with a confident big smile, now he wasn’t even moving. Maybe he fainted, or…….
When the thought echoed in her mind she got cold chills down her spine. The shouts of the crowd outside, the busy workers’ movements seemed far away. Darkness approached Lillian standing in front of him.
He looked at Lillian, blowing away his bangs covering his blindfold.
“Are you scared? Your complexion is pale.”
“……Yes, I’m a little nervous.”
“It’s your first time, so you can’t help it. My one piece of advice is, don’t worry about losing. Instead, focus on what you will gain if you win. Black Rose will write off her debt at once, and she’ll be a big star. If you succeed, you’ll be the hero of the day!”
“You mean I’ll be the main character……?”
“Of course! The winner of the finale! If you do well, I could be the main character of the day, as well as the main character of the Billions Betting Arena! Doesn’t it all depend on people’s perception?”
He didn’t intend it that way, but Darkness’ words acutely penetrated Lillian’s heart. This was what she had been longing for all this time.
Getting out of others’ shadows and getting the spotlight herself.
Being the main character, performing brilliantly, and receiving recognition and applause from others. At the thought of it, Lillian’s heart suddenly pounded.
‘Yeah, if you were going to be timid and fearful, why would you try in the first place?’
Lillian clenched her teeth recalling the terrible training she had so far endured. She had even called upon the devil to overcome her fate, and now she was scared? It wasn’t even humorous.
Lillian’s eyes burned with determination. Still nervous, her heart thumped, but her body no longer froze. Rather, an unknown vitality welled up within her in pace with her rapid heartbeat. With that mindset, Lillian turned her head to Darkness and asked,
“I’m ready. Where should I go?”
“Oye, you’ve finally decided to be a star! Come, follow me this way.”
Darkness led her behind the stage, down dark stairs. Then a few staff members gathered to check Lillian’s outfit for the last time. One of them tightened the clamp on the back of her head so that her mask wouldn’t come off.
“Okay, wait here, the ceiling above your head will open. Don’t be too surprised when the scaffolding moves. Don’t forget to greet the audience when you appear. Then— I wish you good luck!”
Darkness gave her a thumbs up and winked before he moved away. Left alone, Lillian surveyed her surroundings. As she stood on the scaffolding, the employees turned the pulley and lifted it onto the stadium. Her heart was already pounding with anticipation.
Above her head came the host’s enthusiastic voice and the eager cheers of the audience. In between, there were voices chanting ‘Black Rose!’
They were waiting for her.
‘Finally, I am on the stage where I’m the main character.’
The moment she had been dreaming of.
Upon realizing this, surprisingly, all her anxiety disappeared as if it had been washed away.
Instead, her heart trembled with an eagerness that filled her from her fingertips to her toes.